Fact Sheet

Authors Mark Klem
IWAD Doom 2
Engine standard Doom engine
Date 1995/6
Levels 11

Review by Colin Phipps

It's always annoying when you download a level, and there in no text file included in the ZIP. At a glance, you'd think this episode has made the opposite mistake: the ZIP contains lots of text files, one for each level. However, there is no indication as to which text file refers to which level (most refer to MAP01)... unless you go back and download the text file accompanying it from the ftp server. You'd think authors would want to make it easy for us to find out the who and what about their creations, wouldn't you?

To cut to the fact behind the confusion, this WAD is just a compilation of the author's levels, which is why only the individual text files are provided. Since they are each individual levels, I'll go straight to giving comments on each separately:

  1. SHOWDOWN - A deathmatch level - there are no monsters. Plenty of ammo, and barrels scattered around. Architecture is fairly basic, though there is a good box room and some details. Some annoying bits, like acid that doesn't hurt, and a meagsphere secret with a 50/50 chance of getting it first time.
  2. MKDETH - Deathmatch design, very symmetrical, lots of ammo. Rather basic architecture, lacking detail. No monsters.
  3. Revenant Wars extract of MAP01 - 2 large courtyards, each with 4 large walls that open when switches are hit. Each of these contains 3 revenants, in the same positions, and there are only revenants at the level - so the fights were very repetetive. Tons of ammo and weapons. No complicated structures or detail.
  4. Revenant Wars extract of MAP02 - 4 symmetrical courts, held within a large yard. All textured in stone, no variation or detail. Lots of revenants, but tons of ammo to fight with - still a good fight though, since you have to run round to avoid being surrounded. No other fights.
  5. Revenant Wars extract of MAP03 - A level with some nice ideas, like the Zero-G area at the start. Again the only monsters are revenants, and there is tons of ammo, so the fighting is pretty dull. Most of the level has no monsters at all.
  6. Blue Hell - This level is decorated almost entirely in blue textures; this gives the level a rather tacky style. The level begins with a fight against cacodemons, revenants and a cyberdemon. You let the cyber do most of the work, then super-shotgun him from a convenient window. The rest of the level has a couple of good ambushes, but some very repetetive fights. Also the archtitecture is basic and lacks details.
  7. THE DEAD LOFTS - You start this level on a walkway, with viewing points down onto the streets and yards of a small town. You have to clear the yards, which are packed with monsters, before you can descend and go to the exit. There is a cyberdemon, but you needn't fight him, and can use him to deal with some of the other monsters for you. There is tons of ammo, vastly more than needed. The architecture is interesting but the buildings are plain.
  8. Fragtime Marine - A fairly complicated level, with some very good architecture in places. There are some good tunnels, though these are often above ground level, so seem strange. Quite a number of good traps in the tunnnels, but the traps in other areas are over the top - so many monsters teleport, you have to back off and fire rockets continuously, so not very interesting. Some more rather tedious super-shotgun fights. Lots of superchargers and megaspheres, far more than needed. Lots of ammo too. Some serious HOM.
  9. THE TOWERS OF FATE - A level based on 2 courtyards, wach with 4 towers in. The first is packed with cacodemons, for some testing double-shotgun practice; the second is packed with all kinds of monsters, and is a pretty stupid fight, just blast plasma at them. The level has a frustrating pit with barons in, it is not practical to kill them from above or inside, so you have to jump in and climb out and just get injured a lot - not fun :-(. The level is pretty basic architecture, nothing interesting at all.
  10. The Lost Mines - This level is much better than the others. Based on a mine, there are some excellent detailed mine tunnels with a good atmosphere. The wandering imps and spectres make this area exciting to fight. There are some good rooms. However, the level is spoilt by a daft cyberdemon fight (square room, tons of cells), and poor architecture in some areas away from the mines.
  11. The Halls of Death - Another level of lots of tunnels, but without the detail or atmosphere of the previous level. Some interesting fights, in particular a lot of traps using teleports. But some boring fights too. Lots of dead-end traps.

OK, so with hindsight I know I wasn't meant to play it through as an episode, but without knowing which level was which I wasn't to know which levels were for DM and which weren't.

There is an annoying feature of this WAD; the author has changed the COLORMAP, which means the colors when the player is invulnerable of injured are changed from normal. This looks very poor however, looking very artificial and tacky. It all goes to prove that just because you can change something doesn't mean you should.

The only good level of the set of MAP10 (MAP08 and MAP11 have some interesting bits). MAP10 is a good level; with some improvements, on its own, it would be an excellent level. But as a collection, these levels are poorly matched (DM and SP levels mixed up), poorly organised, and most of the levels are simply crap for single play. A couple of these could have been good individually, but this collection is definitely not the right place for them.

File List